<181r>

I have been long indebted to you for your Letters & was in good hopes that the Question you wrote to me about would have been dei|c|ided without me. But understanding that it is still|{our}| depending, I will tell\here send/ you my thoughts about it.

I {did} imploy a Melter to melt all the gold & silver coyned & allow him thirteen pence per pound weight for {melting}\Troy for melting/ the gold: whereof I reccon at least 3d for potts & fire, & the other 10d for wast & charges of making up the sweep. Whence the wast doth not amount to five grains in the pound of gold. And the wast in silver cannot be much more.

Because I do not make up the sweep my self I have no {ex} cannot speak of this matter by my own experience. But consulting my Melter about it, he told me that the wast in melting was about 6{gr} grains per pound weight of silver, t|b|ut in refining it was about double to that in melting. And afterwards he told me that in one parcel he had found the wast in melting amount to 14 grains per pound weight. But the|is| Gold I suspect was by some accident, or falshood in his servants For the Goldsmiths reccon the wast so little that they have perswaded the Crown to make no allowance for it in making the money \in our Mint/, whereas in your Mint the Master is allowed to put a half penny we twelve grains of Copper into every pound of weight of silver when the silver is molten & they are pouring it off into the moulds, \& this is done/ to make amends for the \wast of the/ copper wch fumes away in the {illeg} melting, & by fuming away increases the wast

{illeg}In the year {the} 1707 when the copper was the money current in Scotland was to be recoined, {illeg} we obje wrote to the Officers of your Mint that we were not allowed to put any copper into the pot for making recompence for the wast of copper {illeg} wch fumed away in the melting, & that they were to conform themselves to ye practise of our mint. But they replied that by the \flaming/ coales wch they used in melting, a greater wast was caused then in our Mint, & {illeg} so that unless they were still allowed to put |the| 12 grains of copper into the pot, they could not coin the money standard. Whereupon this allowance was connived at.

How much the copper fumes away in your meltings by the flaming of the coals I do not {illeg}|k|now: but I reccon that when the allowance of 12 grains per pound weight was instituted, it was deemed a sufficient recompence for the wast \made/ by fuming away: whereas in our Mint \as I said/ we have no {rec} allowance made for \recompencing/ that wast. And thence I gather than the wast in your Mint after making up the sweep ought to be less \by some grains/ then the wast in our Mint by some grains{illeg}: & that the wast upon the whole coinage (if the sweep be well made up) may not\must be under 234 pounds weight & may be so little as not to/ exceed 125 pounds weight

For whilst 12 grains of copper are added to every pound weight of silver in every melting & a pound weight of silver makes but about half a pound weight of money: there are about 24 grains of copper added to ye silver in the coinage of ever every pound p|w|eight of money {illeg} coined. And this addition diminishes the \whole/ wast, & should make it 24 grains per pound weight less in your mint then in ours, unless the\supposing the/ coals <181v> in your mint cause a greater wast then in ours. I am\in both mints by the fuming away of the metal {illeg} alike in both mints * < insertion from lower down > *I mean that ye 24 grains are more then enough to make good all your wast. < text from f 181v resumes > / And the wast by the flaming coals must be \in your Mint should/ 24 grains per pound weight more then in ours{illeg} to make the wasted whole wast which remains after making up the sweep, equal in both Mints. I am

Sr

Yor very humble servant

Is. Newton.

© 2019 The Newton Project

Professor Rob Iliffe
Director, AHRC Newton Papers Project

Scott Mandelbrote,
Fellow & Perne librarian, Peterhouse, Cambridge

Faculty of History, George Street, Oxford, OX1 2RL - newtonproject@history.ox.ac.uk

Privacy Statement

  • University of Oxford
  • Arts and Humanities Research Council
  • JISC